Improve Your Customer Service for the Holidays
There are less than 100 shopping days left until Christmas. Are you ready? Here at Discount Retail Store Services, we stress that the holiday months are absolutely vital to the health of your business. It’s when a majority of sales occur, but it’s also when you get a chance to impress the most customers and convert them to regular patrons.
Starting with Halloween, marching through Black Friday and all the way up to Christmas Eve, the holiday season is when brick and mortar stores see a ton of foot traffic. So how do you make a good impression that brings them back year round?
Bolster your Staff
When customers have questions, they want a knowledgeable answer, and they want it fast. If no one is there to help them, expect a lot of rolled eyes and lost sales. If you’ve been in business for a few years, looking at trends from previous holiday seasons should give you a reasonable estimate on what days and times you will be the busiest. If it’s your first year, go with your normal busy days and hours and hope your customer base is fairly consistent.
Checkout with Speed
Quick checkout is a huge advantage that small stores have against big box retailers. Make sure you can get clients in and out in a reasonable time without much waiting, and they will have no reason not to return. Bring on holiday staff early enough to train them on your checkout system. There’s no use having extra workers if they can’t smooth your operations.
Prepare for Flu Season
Be sure to have backups for your backups. The changing of the weather is a driver of cold and flu, and you must be prepared to lose even your most senior staff for some downtime during the holidays. Use time early in the season to get your backup staff some experience with everything. Don’t allow illness to sink the whole store.
Charity is a big part of the holidays and it’s a good idea to help those less fortunate. Look into partnering with a local charity to donate items or a percentage of proceeds. Everyone is in a giving mood around Christmas, and showing customers that you like to give is a good way to make them feel good about shopping at your store.
It’s the holidays, so act like it. Put up decorations, give your staff a chance to dress up and express their holiday spirit, and spread merriment where you can. This part is aimed at staff especially. The happier they are, the easier it is for them to get through the often arduous workload the holidays bring. Their good cheer will spread to customers, and happy customers can spend more time in your store finding all their holiday items. Make sure you’ve got plenty of coffee on hand, snacks (healthy and sweet), and incentivise their customer service. Don’t forget to entice them with a great year end party and heap plenty of praise on them for the good job they are doing.
Keeping these ideas in mind will help any small business maximize holiday profits and drive repeat business year long. Don’t own a small business? Discount Retail Store Services can get you open for the holidays. Contact us now to get started.